Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas One and All!

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to visit my blog over the past year - thank you for reading my ramblings, leaving me the occasional comment and for making blogging such a positive experience. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas filled with happiness and joy!

{image via Pinterest}

Have a fabulous holiday!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Do You Pin?

I joined Pinterest ages ago, but with a lot on my plate, I kind of never got around to doing anything more than accepting my invite.... Until this week.

Suffice to say I'm totally hooked - it is just so darn cool!

While looking at new stuff on there this morning (circa 5am), I came across this image and I must say it seems quite fitting.

I've managed to pin everything from wedding dresses to home decor to puppy dogs! (And apparently tapped into a slightly cheesy side of my personality along the way!)

So my question for today is - do you pin?

Have a fantastic Friday!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Handmade Christmas Decorations - part two

In my last post on handmade decorations, did some patchwork baubles using up old scraps of fabric. Today I made these cute fabric pinwheels, which was another great opportunity to use up fabric that might otherwise sit in my stash unused.

These pinwheels were done with the leftover red gingham from making my little niece a Christmas stocking, along with some calico pieces that I had lying around. (The colours are closer than they appear in this photo). I thought that these would have a kind of vintagey feel, and I just love this cute saddle-stitch grosgrain ribbon!

Pinwheels like this are super easy to make, you can use whatever fabric fits your Christmas colour scheme and with fusible webbing you can even do a no-sew version. For a super easy take on fabric pin wheels, visit  Sandi Henderson Designs for some downloadable PDF instructions.

Have a lovely week! 

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Things I've Been Making

I can't believe how fast December is speeding past! I've more or less got everything organised ready to prepare a full Christmas turkey meal (my first attempt at turkey!) and I've got Christmas decorations up around the house getting in the festive sprit.

One of the gifts I made this year was this cute Christmas stocking for my 3 year old niece in Australia.

In between work and preparing for Christmas, I managed to find time to make these two linen cushions for my mum.

These are roughly 18 by 12 inches, with 3 small tucks toward one end. These will go alongside some of my linen ruffle cushions which were made with the same fabric.

One of the things I've been planning to make for a while is this Monotone Union Jack cushion for my Etsy shop. The cushion has grey 100% linen on the front and back, with different size grosgrain ribbons stitched on to make the union jack shape.

And lastly, I managed to get some more of this gorgeous vintage style linen and I've relisted these Vintage Style Union Jack cushions on Etsy.

I hope you're having a wonderful weekend!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Plumo Love-o!

I just recently came across the gorgeous Plumo website, filled with loads of lovely items. This online site has everything from fashion to homewares to vintage items. The products come from across the globe and the underlying ethos is fair trade and fair pay for the maker.

Here are some of my favourites:

{all images via Plumo}

If you haven't visited the site before I strongly recommend checking them out! :)

Have a lovely day!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Handmade Christmas Decorations - part one

It's no secret that I love handmade and Christmas is no exception, so between now and Christmas Day I thought I'd include some posts sharing some cute, fun decorative ideas for a handmade Christmas.

The idea for today's post is Patchwork Christmas Tree Bauble. These are a super cute idea that I found on the Seeds and Stitches blog over here.

These cute handmade baubles are super simple to make, and great if you're like me and you have loads of small pieces of leftover fabric lying around!

These are not quite done, but I had to finish them off quickly after I added to much water to my glue and they took nearly 24 hours to dry (even sat beside the aga!). At the moment they just have some curling ribbon around them, but I plan to finish these with a quick-dry varnish and find some fabric ribbon to replace the curling ribbon. I'm also going to paint a glue design on some and add filigree jewellery findings at the top and bottom for a tidy finish.

I'm pretty happy on the whole with how they have turned out and I was thrilled to find a good way to use up my small scraps of fabric!

Have a lovely day!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Snowy Weather and a new look for my header!

I love snow. I think after a lifetime in the sun, the novelty of the soft white flakes drifting downwards has yet to wear off! So with the first snow falling and after a very hectic month away with friends and family over November, I've decided my first post now that I'm back seems like a fitting time to show off my new blog header, complete with seasonal snowy images.
(Okay, I had to cheat with some from last year, but you get the idea! :) )

I have to say a big thank you to my sis, Letitia from The White Shed, for the lovely photo of my linen ruffle cushions (you can buy them at her gorgeous shop over here). The rest of these are my own photos, and it seemed like it was about time I got some things that I made up there.

Of course, snow goes hand in hand with Christmas, so while the snow is falling outside, I'm going to be snuggled up indoors making some handmade Christmas decorations which I'll hope to share with you over the next few weeks counting down to the big day!

Have a lovely week!

Friday, October 21, 2011

A Little More Cabbages & Roses

I think it's no secret how much I love Cabbages and Roses, so I had to share this gorgeous video of their Autumn/Winter 11 collection. I love the music, the light, the clothes...

Don't you just love it!?

Have a wonderful Friday!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Looks to love for Autumn!

I'm totally loving all the vintage inspired looks for this season, so I just have to share some of my favourites with you!

Riding boots, floaty florals and baker boy hats at Ralph Lauren

Burnt orange, sheer fabric scarves and beads at Noa Noa

Dark silks from the Noa Noa autumn 11 collection

More florals and lots of beads from Ralph Lauren

Open work crochet scarves and lots of warm woolly layers - Noa Noa Autumn 11 collection

My budget doesn't stretch to Ralph Lauren designer wear, but one of the things I love about this look is that the vintage inspired look leaves so much scope for buying, well, vintage. And since I love nothing more than rootling around to find fabulous vintage clothes that I can wear with a modern twist, I'm already working on my list of style s and fabrics to look out for!

Have you found any looks that you're inspired by with the change of season?

Have a lovely weekend!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Wool Week

Since it's that time of year when the weather is getting cooler and I've started unravelling balls of wool ready to begin making warm scarves, hats and gloves for the cooler months - it seems fitting that this week is the annual Wool Week for 2011.

The Campaign for Wool is an international campaign that was started to promote an awareness of wool and encourage people to use this material over other forms of man-made fibre and wool substitutes.

Wool Week has events throughout the UK and also in Australia and New Zealand and you can find out more about it at the site here.

Since I couldn't let the week go by without finishing at least one wool project, I've been looking through some of my favourite patterns on Ravelry and I plan to have some to finished projects to show off this weekend!

Have a wonderful (woolly) week!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Linen Smocking - My Latest Linen Obsession

Now, I think that my linen obsession is nothing new, but I've added smocked linen to that obsession. I'd love to know how to do smocking, but unfortunately I have more than enough on my plate for the time being!

Since I don't have the time to learn this skill, I'm going to have to be satisfied with some vintage smocked linens I bought on eBay and these gorgeous images of crisp white linen!

I hope you're having a great week!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

English Summer Days

I've been away enjoying a much needed rest the last few weeks and I was lucky enough to get away for a few days to one of my absolute favourite places in England - Bath. The city of Bath is a world heritage site, and when you visit this remarkable city there is no mistaking why.

The beautiful stone houses, the grand sweeping streets and the bustling energy of the place (okay, bustling compared to Cumbria!) make it a wonderful place and since the sun was nice enough to shine the whole time, it was just about as perfect as you get!

In my short visit I manage to cram in a whole lot and here are some of the things I would put on my 'must-do' list if you get the chance to go to this charming town.

The Parade Gardens

The Parade Gardens

The Jane Austen Center

The Royal Crescent

The Roman Spa Museum

Inside the Roman Spa Museum

The Roman Spa Museum again (yep, that's me!)

Sally Lunn's Bar & Restaurant

I also managed to fit in some shopping, a few ciders in the sunshine and got to visit Jamie's Italian (as in Jamie Oliver) and while I know he wasn't cooking it was still really cool!

Have a lovely week!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Plums in Port

The gorgeous sunshine that we've had all week has disappeared this weekend to be replaced with heavy rain and warnings about flash flooding here in the north. So having put off any indoor projects while the sun has been shining, I decided that today was the perfect day to get stuck in with some kitchen projects.

There's been a glut of plums on our trees, so I decided to preserve them in port now ready for a winter treat! This is a super easy way to preserve them (and much less time consuming than making jam) - and it smells like Christmas has come early while they're cooking!

Plums in Port
1 pound (440g) Preserving sugar (normal white sugar will do as an alternative)
250ml Port
200ml water
2 pounds (approximately 1kg) of plums
Preserving jars (clean thoroughly before using)

Clean the plums.
Mix the port, water and sugar in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil for 2 to 3 minutes. (Stir occasionally to prevent the sugar from burning.)
Add the plums, return to the boil and let it boil for around 7 or 8 minutes, until the plums begin to soften.
Remove the mixture from the heat and using a large spoon, place the plums in the cleaned preserving jars. Pour in a little of the mixture they were cooked in until the liquid is around an inch and a half from the top of the jar. Pour approximately an inch of extra port in before sealing.
Once you've finished, store the plums in a dark place for at least two months.

Have a great Sunday!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Cushions, cushions, cushions!

Okay, so I think I've mentioned a lot once or twice that I make cushions - and one of the reasons I love cushions is because they're such a simple way to change the look in a room and to make a space look more inviting. So when I saw that Ness at Marley and Lockyer is having a giveaway from her lovely shop, which has the most gorgeous cushions, I just couldn't resist sharing this with you.

Here's what you could win...

{Images from Marley and Lockyer}

Like I said, gorgeous!

If you haven't already, pop by Marley and Lockyer to find out more!

And just in case you don't win, I just had to share some more cushion loveliness from some very talented ladies...

These first ones are from Laura at 'My Summer House'...

{Images from Summerhouse on Etsy}

These are from Kellie at 'Ada and Darcy'...

{Images from Ada and Darcy}

Oh, and if you want to see some cushions I made - take a look over here!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Loveliness from Lisbeth Dahl

If your style leans toward feminine, stylish decor, then it doesn't get better than the beautiful girly items offered at Lisbeth Dahl.

If you've yet to discover this lovely shop, here's a peak at some of what's on offer.

{All images from Lisbeth Dahl}

If you'd like to find out more, head over here to have a look around the stunning range of homewares and jewellery in this totally charming Danish store.

Have a fantastic Monday!